Bob Hawke tells us what he really thinks of the state of politics… and the Queen

Former Prime Minister and past Labor leader Bob Hawke has offered his thoughts on a wide range of topics, including

Former Prime Minister and past Labor leader Bob Hawke has offered his thoughts on a wide range of topics, including what he really thinks about Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull.

At an annual speech as part of the Woodford Folk Festival, Hawke described Tony Abbott as a “decent man”, but not a “great prime minister”.

Furthermore, when asked whether current Prime Minister and Liberal leader Malcolm Turnbull was a threat to Labor, Hawke replied “of course he is”.

Indeed, many parallels have been drawn between Bob Hawke and Malcolm Turnbull, who have both managed a bipartisan appeal throughout their respective careers.

On other topics, Bob Hawke added that although he respects Queen Elizabeth, he still believes a referendum would be best for Australia after her reign. “The old darl’s looking bloody fit still”, Hawke said.

The former PM also discussed terrorism, artificial intelligence and Indigenous rights. He said the issue that will determine Australia’s future will be, “dealing with the gaps between our Indigenous people and the rest of us”.

What do you think of Bob Hawke’s remarks? Share your thoughts below

Long time Woodford patron & supporter Bob Hawke with the lovely festival director…lots of mutual respect there

Posted by Nicky Pullen on Monday, December 28, 2015

  1. He would appear to be past the time when he should be allowed out in public!

    • lol, take your point Janice Lock, although i did avoid age in the comment! obviously you and I are more sensible than that!

    • Don’t complain about ageism in your next breath! These kind of throw away comments seem harmless enough but reflect a view that once we have the serious wrinkle we should not be taken seriously – not exactly enlightened thinking!

      • Robyn. Koszyk  

        Agreed Sandy .. so many people on this site complain about ageism & they are a part of it.

      • Robyn. Koszyk  

        Sorry Sandi .. I spelt you name wrong. 😳

    • Robyn. Koszyk  

      I’m supposing your comment are aimed at all elderly people. Pathetic!!!

  2. All these former PMs seembto think they have all the answers but, if hey, we voted them out because they didn’t!
    Back in your box, Bob!

  3. i really don’t care what a man with no morals thinks about anything at all

    • Absolutely not. I am almost amoral ! Well not really but certainly not overly moral but I don’t seek public office nir do I pontificate on matters that really I know nothing about. I have spent my whole working life as a nurse just doing my best.

      • Robyn. Koszyk  

        He was giving only his THOUGHTS .. stop reading so much into it.

    • He did something you will never do , he was the Prime Minister of this country and served it well, his personal life has nothing to do with his service to Australia and by the way Pat Dance is Tony Abbott still living at Peta Credlin’s house..where is Margie Abbott these days?

    • Jamie Briggs just left the cabinet for touching up a staffer oversea’s, Mal Brough is being investigated by the police, and both of these men are in our Parliament now, what Bob years ago is between him and his wife.. not you Pat Dance, it is none of your business

    • David James . No need to get quite so worked up. I just said I was not interested in anything he had to say, my opinion, you are welcome to take notice Your choice . Unfortunately when you are a public figure it becomes public business Quite wrongly maybe. I see a few others agree with me sorry you are offended .

    • a very few agree with you..don’t too carried away, there are 24 million Australians, that is quite a few more than 9 🙂

    • i actually used the word few . Don’t lecture I know the population of Australia. As I said my opinion you are welcome to yours my dear

  4. I must have missed the part in the article about the state of politics, I couldn’t find it. A related article, I saw the interview on tv, on the states was quite good and his thoughts were worthwhile as were his views on nuclear energy. I would take these last two as being part of the state of politics.

  5. Who gives a flying fig what Hawke thinks. He’s still draining the Australian purse even though he’s not in politics anymore

    • He’s getting the same pension and benefits as all ex-pms, and while you could argue that it’s too much, you couldn’t argue with any justice that they shouldn’t get a pension at all. Given the level of responsibility, the extreme stress of the job, and the blind, stupid hate directed at them by people like Tom, I don’t think it’s nearly enough in fact.

    • Cliff Bernard : My objection to that is they can write books and get paid. Public speaking and get paid. Take another job, and get paid. If you or I or any other person on a pension did that we would immediately lose the pension. They do not NEED a pension. and that is the crux of it. And what is more, they are getting younger and younger. Once entitled to a pension they have it for life. Can you imagine the cost to the country with retired politicians who get pensions for 40 years or more, all the while quite capable to work and earn a good living?

    • Need doesn’t enter into it Joan. They should get at least comparable benefits to the CEOs of major corporations, who get a golden handshake that makes the PM’s pension look like a charity handout. The business they manage is bigger than any of them and we need talented people in that role. We should pay them more, in my opinion.

    • Cliff Bernard : A golden handshake maybe, but it should depend on performance and quality of job well done. But not a pension that is paid year after year from when they might retire at 45? So a politician retires at 45, gets a pension and lives to 90 +? Sorry, if they get a pension, they should not work or have any other monetary gain. So far there has been few that I would say have earned their pension.And, really, they are not CEO’s they choose to go into politics because they know if successful it is a lucrative career with high dividends for a short time input.

    • It’s a mistake to think of it as a “pension”. Rather, it’s the CEO’s golden handshake spread out over time. Some PMs don’t live long after retirement, others do. Our nation is bigger and more important than any company. Henry McKinnell, CEO of Pfizer got $83 million on retiring, despite relatively poor performance. Hawke’s total pension is nowhere near that figure, and he did a fine job as PM, leaving the country much more prosperous than when he started. But McKinnel’s payout is dwarfed by William McGuire Chief Executive Officer of UnitedHealth Group Inc. for 15 years until 2006, whose payout was 1.6 Billion in stock. If you consider those sorts of numbers, our PMs are being robbed.

    • Cliff Bernard : Sorry Cliff, CEO’s take on a job for a company and their job is to make money, If they don’t they are sacked and still get a “golden handshake” I believe in payment for job well done. Not payment for a position held. And quite honestly these massive payouts are way over the top for the services rendered, both by CEO’s and politicians. Not that long ago Politicians did not earn a salary, they managed the country for the “prestige” and if altruistic, out of the goodness of their hearts.

  6. I think sometimes listening to older people ideas on things is good and they have very good ideas…..maybe some should shut up and pay respect to the elderly as they have lived longer and been through harder times.

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